Gale’s ECCO and BiblioLife: Print-on-Demand Initiatives

by

While recently searching abebooks for works by a particular eighteenth-century publisher whose titles I collect, I discovered a number of ECCO editions of his works available in “BRAND NEW COPIES”. Several titles offered the following additional information:

Description:
Brand New Book with Free Worldwide Delivery ***** Print on Demand *****
Editorial Reviews:
Synopsis:
The 18th century was a wealth of knowledge, exploration and rapidly growing technology and expanding record-keeping made possible by advances in the printing press. In its determination to preserve the century of revolution, Gale initiated a revolution of its own: digitization of epic proportions to preserve these invaluable works in the largest archive of its kind. Now for the first time these high-quality digital copies of original 18th century manuscripts are available in print, making them highly accessible to libraries, undergraduate students, and independent scholars.
Western literary study flows out of eighteenth-century works by Alexander Pope, Daniel Defoe, Henry Fielding, Frances Burney, Denis Diderot, Johann Gottfried Herder, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and others. Experience the birth of the modern novel, or compare the development of language using dictionaries and grammar discourses.
++++

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Curious about whether Gale was aware that a company was reproducing and selling their copies, I wrote Scott Dawson. He replied,

We are working with a print-on-demand vendor by the name of BiblioLife in Charleston, SC, to do this work. We have most of the ECCO works loaded into the system if our contract with the source library provides us POD rights. We are looking to add titles from some of our other collections over time. We looked at a number of ‘vendors’ for this work and decided on BiblioLife that specializes in these “long-tail books’ and have been quite happy with them. Note that the cover will not be the same as the actual as we have not captured the actual covers, so it is a graphic that corresponds to the general subject area from which the book came (history, philosophy, religion, etc.) along with a portion of the title.

.

Especially for those who lack access to ECCO, this development seems in some ways a welcomed one. The cost of the late eighteenth-century works that my search had yielded seem to average just below $25.00. Yet, more browsing reveal a range from $9.66 to $72.00. The high range prices seemed to be mostly for Bibles, and the same title can range a few dollars more or less depending on the bookseller. There of course is also often shipping charges. Scott’s comments about the cover are also clearly noted in the listing for most of these books. Yet, in the case of the titles I was searching for, it was not clear at all in most listings what volume of the series one would be purchasing or what individual titles were contained in the work being sold. Consider this note:

The below data was compiled from various identification fields in the bibliographic record of this title. This data is provided as an additional tool in helping to insure edition identification:
++++
Bodleian Library (Oxford)

P006358

Volume title page, for issues to be bound together when a volume of serialized fiction is completed, follows the wrapper title in the last weekly issue of the novels for that volume. Volume title pages are engraved, with volume numbers, a list of works included in that volume, with a vignette above the imprint. An internal title page for the individual work is bound in the first weekly issue of the novel being serialized, and title page imprint includes year of publication for that novel. Imprints lack date; years of publication from reference sources. Imprints vary slightly. Weekly issue price: six-pence. At head of wrapper title: To be continued weekly. With frontis. plates in each issue for that novel. Some wrappers carry instructions to the binder for placement of plates. Includes serialized novels, histories, romances, or memoirs, including translations of foreign publications. Works are normally completed in three or four issues; volumes apparently appear three or four times a year. Description based on: [Vol. XII.] Number CLXXXIV. [1783]; title from wrapper.

London [England] : printed for Harrison and Co. No. 18, Paternoster- Row, and sold by all other booksellers, stationers and newscarriers, in town and country, . v., plates ; 23 cm (8°)

.

This note, evidently reproduced from the ESTC description of the series, clearly does not identify a particular volume and could suggest to some the very unlikely possibility that by paying $25.00 one would receive the complete series (that is, 23 volumes, containing over 60 individual novels). These descriptions, I should note, seem to be provided by the bookseller selling the title, and not by Gale.

Also troublesome is the description that accompanies other listings:

Synopsis:
This is an EXACT reproduction of a book published before 1923. This IS NOT an OCR’d book with strange characters, introduced typographical errors, and jumbled words. This book may have occasional imperfections such as missing or blurred pages, poor pictures, errant marks, etc. More…that were either part of the original artifact, or were introduced by the scanning process. We believe this work is culturally important, and despite the imperfections, have elected to bring it back into print as part of our continuing commitment to the preservation of printed works worldwide. We appreciate your understanding of the imperfections in the preservation process, and hope you enjoy this valuable book.

Here we have no mention that the copies are twice-removed from the original book, having been digitized from microfilm.

I also investigated BiblioLife. Its home page presents a commendable view of the company as one dedicated to preservation and working with libraries, archivists, and those engaged in digitization projects. There’s also an indication that part of the purchase price would be put toward helping fund digitization efforts: “We have a vision that paying customers can fund the digitization of the world’s books and we think libraries are anchors of any healthy and vibrant community. And in this digital age, they serve an important role as a physical meeting place of culture. We think this program can further that vision.”

Yet, I did not see BiblioLife listed as the publishing partner with Gale in any of the abebook listings I viewed. However, I did see Nabu Press identified as the publisher in a few listings, and a search for this company uncovered an interesting blog post from an information technology professional, Yakov Shafranovich that indicates that Nabu Press is BiblioLife:

I took some time to check various state corporation databases and actually managed to find who Nabu Press is. They are … BiblioBazaar / BiblioLife, a company started by former BookSurge partners after they sold their POD company to Amazon. It is no surprise that they print their POD books through Amazon.
How do I know this – take a look at the SC filing for Nabu Press LLC…Nabu Press = BiblioBazaar

Shafranovich’s sleuthing is further confirmed by an April 2010 Publisher’s Weekly article“BiblioBazaar: How a Company Produces 272,930 Books A Year”. The article reinforces aspects of BiblioLife’s website description of its efforts and philosophy:

While e-books, iPads and Kindles have dominated the headlines, BiblioLife is one of a handful of smart, new, technology-enabled companies driving an exciting trend in the publishing world. Working closely with libraries, archives and aggregators, the company puts out-of-copyright books back into good old-fashioned print, one copy at a time, using print-on-demand technology.

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And it also helps explain why we have not heard of the firm before:

So how has Bibliolife, despite its major production, flown under the radar until this year’s Bowker stats came out? For one, Davis says, the company simply isn’t seeking publicity as much as good solid relationships and content partnerships. “We aren’t a press release-centric company, and we are really focused on unique materials that are not part of mass digitization projects,” he said. “Who has that content and how we are getting it is something that is a competitive advantage.”

As Scott’s comments about POD rights and BiblioLife president Mitchell Davis’s remarks about content indicate, there’s much food for thought here about access and control of these reproductions of reproductions…of reproductions. Moreover, the listings offered again point to the importance of understanding what is really being offered and sold.

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28 Responses to “Gale’s ECCO and BiblioLife: Print-on-Demand Initiatives”

  1. Anna Battigelli Says:

    Now this is both interesting and odd. The lack bibliographical information will be a problem for anyone wanting to use this service for scholarly purposes. A search for Gulliver’s Travels and Nabu, for instance, included what turns out to be a POD 1914 edition of the Travels edited by Charles Robert Gaston. So Nabu must offer POD for works up to 1923. And a search for Edward Stillingfleet (who would be reprinted in the eighteenth century and thus captured by Gale’s archives) yields his sermons, but only some entries provide dates of publication.

    Since scholars are the ones likely to use this resource–and to be very grateful for access to books that they might not otherwise have–it would be helpful to have better and more precise bibliographical data. Otherwise, one cannot know what one is reading, especially if the title page is not included.

  2. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Abebooks, now owned by Amazon, attracts a wide variety of buyers from the student searching for used textbooks to the collector looking for a specific title. The booksellers who have listed these ECCO/BiblioLife products do not seem to be sellers who are specialists in rare books (and I doubt rare booksellers would become involved with selling these titles).

    The informed scholar interested in purchasing one of these titles would probably use the “ask the bookseller” tool to inquire for more information about the work. In response the bookseller might send a PDF of the title page and provide specifics about the titles included or he/she might ask BiblioLife/Nadu for the ECCO ID number (and then perhaps adjust the listing). Ben Pauley’s Eighteenth-Century Book Tracker project and Brian Geiger and Ben’s Google project may well be of great help to these booksellers–and scholars.

    A current exchange on SHARP-L about the availability for purchase of a 1890 copy of a Spanish-language history of the Philippines with printed annotations seems relevant. Several have responded to the initial query indicating that copies of this work are available on abebooks, AdLibris, Bookfinder. However, the initial poster specified that he is looking for the 1890 edition published in Paris–the one with these specific annotations. And a copy of the work he is searching is not currently available on any of these sites. Evidently, those responding had not attended to the information about the particular edition he is seeking.

  3. Anna Battigelli Says:

    Amazon has what look like similar POD texts, but the publication information varies. Some entries note Nabu, others BiblioBazaar, still others Gale, and one had this note from the University of Michigan:

    Product Description
    This volume is produced from digital images created through the University of Michigan University Library’s preservation reformatting program. The Library seeks to preserve the intellectual content of items in a manner that facilitates and promotes a variety of uses. The digital reformatting process results in an electronic version of the text that can both be accessed online and used to create new print copies. This book and thousands of others can be found in the digital collections of the University of Michigan Library. The University Library also understands and values the utility of print, and makes reprints available through its Scholarly Publishing Office.

    Some uniformity in bibliographical citation and greater completeness of bibliographical detail would be helpful. Perhaps things are still in flux.

  4. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Well, while things are in flux, I am not sure if uniformity will be forthcoming any time soon. These reprints all have their own, new ISBN, and that will be the way of identifying these texts from the seller’s perspective–and from that of some users, too. These descriptions come from individual merchants, and they are probably not only unaware of the problem but also lacking in the expertise to address these issues; they are writing, in part, marketing copy. There are a number of outfits that engage in reprints of digital copies (though BiblioLife is the first that I know to use Gale’s digital texts)–Kessler Publishing is one example, so I have seen such problems elsewhere. Through Amazon.com readers’ comments it is clear that not only academics and students are purchasing these texts.

  5. Jim North Says:

    Many thanks for the above comments.
    I find that the POD puiblishers are very scant with biobliographical details. This is especially frustrating if you are seeking a serial publication. It would be most helpful if the POD publishers would state the year of original publication, the edition, the original publisher the year volume (in the case of serial publications) &c. Noy opnly is it common sense to do this, it is poor sales technique for them not to do this. Giving as much detail to the prospective customer can only boost sales. For my own part, I do not and will not buy POD books that give little or no bibliographical details or that at OCR’d and not actual reproductions.

  6. Anna Battigelli Says:

    Jim,

    You make a good point about the sales value of accurate and complete bibliographical information. Since the POD texts we are discussing are going to be of most value for scholars, it makes sense to provide the information necessary to identity the text offered.

  7. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Jim and all,

    I agree with your remarks about the publishers. One of the problems here, though, is that many of these entries are the retail sellers–not the publishers (who may or may not have included full information).

    • Jim North Says:

      Alas! it is not the retailers who do not give bibliographical details of the POD books. I have frequently contacted various retailers for further details of books. I am told that it is the publishers who fail to give full bibliographical details.
      As I said in my previous contribution. If the publisher declines to give the reasonable details that I and others require before making a purchase, I will not buy the book I want for my research. I will either obtain copies from the British Library and have them boound up or download from the internet (if possible) and have those copies bound up.

      • Eleanor Shevlin Says:

        Hi, Jim

        As I tried to suggest, it can be the retailers as well as the publishers. We see examples of retailers who don’t in some of those who seem to be selling these ECCO/BiblioLife titles and not supplying the info, while other retailers for the same title are.

  8. Anna Battigelli Says:

    Judging from my search today, POD texts seem to be flooding online bookstores like Abebooks. A search for Sir Walter Scott’s Miscellaneous Prose Works yielded 1351 entries, only 8 of which were original, printed works. The other 1343 were POD surrogates by Bibliolife, Nabu, Pranava Books, Kessinger, Bibliobazaar, and so forth. I’m curious why there would be so many POD copies of this particular title. Some entries simply listed the text as straight from the vendor. Could individuals simply download the POD company catalogue and incorporate it into their offerings through Abebooks? Perhaps this explains the flood.

    If there is a way to search for texts that eliminates POD entries, this might be helpful to know. It would also be interesting to hear from vendors about how they feel about these offerings.

  9. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Especially since its acquisition in 2008 by Amazon, it makes sense that abebooks would be flooded with POD titles because it is arguably the main international marketplace site for buying all kinds of books being sold by booksellers all over the world. Because POD eliminates the need to stock a title and instead allows a bookseller to obtain wholesale and sell retail as needed, it would make sense that many would simply incorporate these titles in their offerings.

    One can limit the returns by publication date (other limits exist if one is searching even more specifically).

    Some of these publishers –Bibliolife and Nabu, for instance–are really the same company, so there are a number of duplicates here, too. Kessinger has been in this business for a while now, too.

    Here are a few Amazon customer reviews of Kessinger works that suggest those beyond academics might be purchasing these works and that a few are pointing out problems:


    3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
    5.0 out of 5 stars Great Introduction to Alexander Pope, February 2, 2009

    By Singing Mom “Linda” (Birmingham, AL USA) – See all my reviews

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: The Rape of the Lock and Other Poems (Paperback)
    This book has a good selection of Pope’s best-known works, and was the perfect Christmas gift for my father-in-law, as it contained all of his favorites without being too cumbersome. I also appreciated both the easy-to-read format and the font selection. While many textbooks are printed in a small font, this edition comes in a size 11 point font, which is easier on the eyes, but not so large as “large print” versions. It would be a wonderful introduction to Alexander Pope’s poetry for someone who is not familiar with it.

    5.0 out of 5 stars Miscellaneous works of Sir Walter Scott: Tales of a Grandfather, June 26, 2010
    By Lois M. Mclean (San Antonio, TX United States) – See all my reviews
    (REAL NAME)

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: The Miscellaneous Works Of Sir Walter Scott: Tales Of A Grandfather, History Of Scotland (Hardcover)
    Walter Scott makes history interesting. I knew something of Scotland’s history, but this fills in the details we didn’t study in history books. Thoroughly enjoyed the book; didn’t want it to end.

    By D. Costanza “DonnaofRaymond” (usa) – See all my reviews
    (REAL NAME). This review is from: Hermetica, Part 4: The Ancient Greek and Latin Writings Which Contain Religious or Philosophic Teachings Ascribed to Hermes Trismegistus (Paperback).
    I bought this book for my husband and he is into these type of writings.
    He loves it and is collecting books in this genre.
    Thanks.

    4 of 5 people found the following review helpful:
    2.0 out of 5 stars Dated and problematic, November 25, 2003
    By Christopher I. Lehrich (Quincy, MA) – See all my reviews
    (REAL NAME)

    This review is from: Hermetica, Part 1: The Ancient Greek and Latin Writings Which Contain Religious or Philosophic Teachings Ascribed to Hermes Trismegistus (Paperback)
    If you just want to read the Hermetica, read Brian Copenhaver’s translations, which are much better than Scott’s. And of course, these aren’t by Sir Walter Scott (of Ivanhoe fame) anyway, if you’re interested in him for some reason, but by a quite different Walter Scott.
    Scott’s translations are still valuable for the specialist. You should be able to find used copies of the trade paperback edition (Hermes House, at one point), though, which are rather better bound than these Kessinger xeroxes.

    If you have Copenhaver, you’ll probably want these, although I’d recommend a different printing.

    5.0 out of 5 stars But one disappointment…., February 27, 2010
    By Jason R. Bretz (Lehigh Valley, Pa. US of A) – See all my reviews
    (REAL NAME)

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: Hermetica, Part 1: The Ancient Greek and Latin Writings Which Contain Religious or Philosophic Teachings Ascribed to Hermes Trismegistus (Paperback)
    I like this book for a study on Hermetics…I read “The Kybalion” The Hermetica” and am also reading “Initiation into Hermetics ” by Franz Bardon. The only thing i didn’t care for in the book was the Christian overtone at some points of the book. This is not the fault of the translator as far as I can tell and may just be this readers opinion.
    I have one other translation by Brian Copenhaver. His introduction to the Hermetica is more on a college level and was harder for this reader to understand, where as this version was much better for this reader. For a study about Hermetics I recommend buying this book.

  10. Scott Dawson Says:

    From previous posts you may remember me as the product manager for ECCO, Burney and a number of the other Gale Digital Collections. I am also the Gale point person for our print on demand project with BiblioLife. Here is a summary of our partnership and at least some responses to points raised in this string.

    Gale has entered into an agreement with BiblioLife to produce Print on Demand versions of the works from the Gale Digital Collections, starting with the Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO) and Eighteenth Century Collections Online, Part II. BiblioLife was chosen after a lengthy review and selection process due to their expertise in this type of historical monographs. BiblioLife has begun processing material from ECCO and there are currently over 117,000 titles available. These works are available for purchase in the price range of $12.50 – $62.50, depending on the size of the work, with the largest and most expensive books being nearly 1,000 pages.

    Currently there are only paperback editions available, but hard covers may be added at a future date. A great differentiator in our ECCO Print Editions data is that we have captured volume data for these books and and passed that on to the retail channels (Amazon, Barnes and Noble and many, many others). Here is an example of a book where you can see that it is “volume 1 of 4 volumes” –

    The complete works of M. de Montesquieu. Translated from the French. In four volumes. ... Volume 1 of 4

    The complete works of M. de Montesquieu. Translated from the French. In four volumes. … Volume 1 of 4

    Buy from Amazon

    At this point, each volume of a multi-volume set is sold individually, but we are looking at ways to ‘bundle’ them together at a slightly discounted price. We are also looking at ways to implement appropriate discounts if a professor chooses a work for use in the classroom.

    We also captured all the data fields we had in our ECCO bibliographic data and combined that for the record that displays in the retail sales channels. We did this in the interest of increasing the chance of edition identification (this includes notes, ESTC IDS and other helpful information you will see in the book description).

    These print editions may be found through most online book stores (Amazon, BN.com, etc.) and can also be purchased at most bookstores as they are part of the Ingram iPage database. They are also available through NASCORP, a university bookstore wholesaler. As with the ECCO database, what is provided are facsimiles of the actual work, not the OCR’d text, so the reader will have a similar experience as to reading the original 18th century editions.

    As these books are sold, Gale will pay royalties to the libraries from which we scanned the work, similar to our system for digital databases (like ECCO). After we have completed the works from ECCO, we will look at uploading works from our other digital collections. More on those at a later date.

    Yes, BiblioLife is run by people that were previously at BookSurge, though this is not the reason that these works are sold through Amazon. We make books available through Amazon because that is where people go to buy books, plain and simple. Per my comments above, they are also available through a wide variety of other sites which is one of the main reasons for us having chosen BiblioLife.

  11. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Many thanks, Scott, for your comments. The clarifications and additional information that you offer are truly helpful and important to our gaining a better understanding of the various entities engaged in POD versions of older texts as well as Gale’s particular choice of BiblioLife.

    I’m including here a clarification Scott sent me about one the extracts I used in my original post:

    The one clip/synopsis that you included (below) is not from an ECCO work, but from one of the Nabu collections. They are an imprint of BiblioLife. The blurb is meant to differentiate the Nabu works from others in the market that are selling uncleaned OCR versions of some historical texts which. Hope this helps.

    Synopsis:
    This is an EXACT reproduction of a book published before 1923. This IS NOT an OCR’d book with strange characters, introduced typographical errors, and jumbled words. This book may have occasional imperfections such as missing or blurred pages, poor pictures, errant marks, etc. More…that were either part of the original artifact, or were introduced by the scanning process. … hope you enjoy this valuable book.

    .

    Scott’s clarification points to the need to recognize that Nadu has a separate function within the BiblioLife umbrella–and that’s good to know.

    Finally, I didn’t think it was strange at all that we are finding these texts being sold on Amazon or Abebooks. Both are natural marketplaces for such works. Also, my remarks about companies purchasing other companies concerned foremost Amazon’s purchase of Abebooks (as opposed to BookSurge’s purchase of BiblioLife).

    Books provided by Gale to BiblioLife clearly come with more helpful, authoritative information that will enable proper identification of these texts. Whether individual booksellers buying from BiblioLife include this important information is another matter.

  12. Anna Battigelli Says:

    One thing that is great about ECCO’s POD service through BiblioLife is that those without access to ECCO can get access to selected works, admittedly at a price. This may not be the perfect solution to access problems, but it is a bit better than having no access at all. And to return to a question that Laura Rosenthal asked on Long18th earlier this summer, many of us prefer reading from printed copies of digital surrogates.

    Of course, purchasing such a text requires access to clear bibliographical information for each entry. There is room for improvement in this area. Thanks, Scott, for your helpful overview.

  13. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Yes, widening access seems an important benefit to this development, and I would not be surprised if faculty members submitted purchasing requests for select titles to their libraries if their institutions do not have subscriptions to ECCO. These texts are also, in my mind, a clear example of PDFs meant to be printed rather than read on line.

    I also appreciated the possibility of classroom discounts for instructors who are interested in using one or more of these texts in their courses.

  14. denise BERGER Says:

    I am searching the three volumes of Erman Bibliographie der deutschen universitaten that you have edited?I possess only dritter(third) teil?How to find the others two

  15. EEBO Editions Now Available Through Amazon « Early Modern Online Bibliography Says:

    [...] August,  Eleanor posted a piece on ECCO’s print on demand (POD) offerings through various online booksellers.  These POD copies are produced by companies such as Nabu, [...]

  16. Cambridge Library Collection Says:

    We at the Cambridge Library Collection have just come across this extremely interesting blog article. Cambridge University Press has been reissuing its own backlist titles as print-on-demand paperbacks for many years, and in 2009 extended this activity to a cohort of out-of-copyright books from other publishers, selected in consultation with academic experts. We believe that the main problems of POD publishing as described in the article and subsequent comments – those of legibility of the text and clarity of the metadata – do not arise with our own reissues.

    We scan these books at our headquarters in Cambridge and take great care to provide complete and clear texts, with legibility being our highest priority – damaged text is repaired, pull-out maps are unfolded and photographed in their entirety, and if appropriate placed on our website so that they can be viewed in more detail. It is nothing short of maddening when we discover that a book has been defaced, plates have been removed etc., because if a copy is not capable of being reproduced to a clear and legible quality standard, we will not attempt to reproduce it. This does mean, however, that we don’t need to put a regular disclaimer about quality in our products. (There has been one instance so far where we have broken our own rule: a text where we were not happy with the quality, but our advisors urged us to go ahead, as the book was unavailable otherwise. In this case only, we added an explanation of the problems encountered.)

    We also provide complete metadata, including the size, page extent and number of illustrations, to the same bibliographic standards as for Cambridge University Press new books. The current British standard does not enable us to include information on the publication date of the original book in this metadata package, but each book has a blurb (readable on Amazon and on our own website) which provides this date, and also states the edition, if not the first.

    At the moment, most of our titles are from the nineteenth century. We are very keen to extent the process back into the eighteenth century, and have begun to do so, but one of the arguments for not doing so has been that ECCO already covers the ground. It is therefore encouraging to learn of an interest among scholars in acquiring good-quality individual print copies of eighteenth-century works. This certainly chimes with the enthusiastic response our current offering has received – it makes our efforts seem worthwhile when somebody writes in and says how handsome and useful the books are!

    The full range of our books can be seen at http://www.cambridge.org/clc (where readers are invited to submit suggestions for books they would like to see reissued), and our blog can be found at http://cambridgelibrarycollection.wordpress.com

  17. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Many thanks for letting use know about your efforts at Cambridge University Press to make available quality copies of nineteenth-century titles and your interest in doing the same for eighteenth-century titles if the interest exists.

    You might be interested in other posts that discuss initiatives to provide metadata for eighteenth-century titles such as Ben Pauley’s 18th-Century Book Tracker project, and the Google Books digital award that he and the ESTC’s Brian Geiger received to assist with that end. Also, the Laura Mandell’s 18thConnect project is also making in-roads.
    What is especially laudatory about your project is CLC’s attention to quality issues.

  18. Anna Battigelli Says:

    This does sound like a worthy and timely project: thanks. Can you say more about why “the current British standard does not enable” inclusion of publication dates?

  19. Caroline Murray Says:

    As we understand the situation, the current bibliographic standards are geared only to new books. For their purposes, the paperback book being logged is published in 2011, and they don’t have a category for ‘originally published in’. We have indeed been accused occasionally of trying to ‘pass off’ an old book as a new one by people who visit a bibliographic site rather than one where our own blurbs are available. We obviously hope that, now that POD reissuing has become commonplace, the standards will be modified before long, and all we can do is continue to nag about this!

  20. Anna Battigelli Says:

    Interesting. You are quite right to nag! Who determines the bibliographic standards?

  21. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Are you referring, Caroline, to MARC21 standards, based at the Library of Congress?

  22. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Caroline,

    This clarification is extremely helpful–and it also supports some surmises we’ve had on this blog about misrepresentations and confusion surrounding dating. I’ve witnessed on numerous occasions third-party vendors who do not include the digital publisher’s full bibliographic info for the POD works they are selling.

  23. Caroline Murray Says:

    The standard we use in the UK is run by BIC – Book Industry Communication. I have to say I don’t know much about any of this – I simply try to publish books! – but I’m told by the colleagues who manage our Data Care that the system really isn’t at all suited to the books I publish: since I don’t intend to change the books, I’d like them to change the system!

  24. Eleanor Shevlin Says:

    Completely understandable that this topic would be outside your domain. This problem of the rules/categories not being as well-suited as they might be seems to echo problems surrounding descriptors used in the ESTC.

  25. ECCO Texts and Print-on-Demand Possibilities « Enfilade Says:

    [...] online search quickly turned up a fine discussion of the issue — not surprisingly — at Early Modern Online Bibliography. Eleanor Shevlin wrote a thoughtful posting on the subject last August, which has thus far [...]

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